Escape the everyday and explore a world of history and fantasy at this popular family-friendly fair. From knights, vikings and peasants to unicorns and orcs, the two-day event features an extensive program to delight the whole family.

Winterfest is one of the longest-running annual medieval fairs in the Sydney metro region, held on the first weekend of the winter school holidays, 7th and 8th of July, at the Hawkesbury Showground, between Richmond & Windsor.

Immerse yourself in the action with a wonderful line-up of entertainment, including:

• The exciting Winterfest Jousting Tournament: see the face-off between champions in the sport of kings!

• Full Contact Fighting: The best from Australia and New Zealand compete in the Historical Medieval Battles (HMB) tournament for selection to represent their country in the Battle of the Nations World Championships!

• Graceful and powerful raptors fly free in the Full Flight Birds of Prey display. Learn about birds of prey in Australia and the history of falconry.

• Melee Battles with knights in armour from a range of historical periods. Watch the groups battle for supremacy in the ‘Combat and Arms’ display, which concludes with the ‘Grand Melee’!

• The Mounted Skill-at-Arms, demonstrating the skills required for knights in training and for battle.

• The Re-enactors’s Row, where you can try helmets, armour, shields and weapons. Friendly re-enactors from the dark ages through to the 17th century enjoy sharing their knowledge about the people and period they are re-enacting.

Have a go at hands-on activities including a traditional archery range, Celtic drumming workshops, and the chance to learn to use a rapier. Children can practice their skills with (safe) swords and get creative with medieval themed drawing, colouring and crafts. The popular Winterfest unicorns are back, and they love pats from you and the kids.

Visit the ‘Artisan Alley’ with lots of educational and interactive displays of traditional skills, and take a stroll through the ‘Merchant’s Row’ to browse the vibrant range of stalls including quality artisan and handcrafted wares.

Roaming entertainers add to the festival atmosphere, including musicians and minstrels, and ‘Feldergast the Fool’ the wandering jester. There is face-painting for the children and a great selection of quality food vendors to choose from.

Immerse yourself in the festival environment by wearing something a bit different from the usual. The Winterfest Costume and Cosplay competition returns in 2018. Join the competition parade for judging, or if that’s not your thing, you may be surprised with an on-the-spot prize. Come along in a medieval-inspired outfit or fantasy-style clothing; all medieval periods, cultures, and styles are welcome.

With so much to do, explore and discover, Winterfest is perfect school holiday family entertainment.

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